Artist of the day: The Cowboy Mafia
The Cowboy Mafia -- singer-guitarists Frankie Sixxxgun and Frankie Mob, bassist Doc Forge and drummer Thumper Orion -- formed in 2007 in Tampa and have been rocking roughnecks' socks off ever since.
They play a Jack Daniels-doused concoction of southern rock, hard rock and classic metal. Cowboy Mafia lassos you back to the days of fun loud music (early Van Halen, Motorhead, AC/DC) before the Goths and grimacing frat boys shut down the party. “We’re playing rock ’n’ roll like you don’t hear it no more,” Mob proclaims.
The Cowboy Mafia will play a free show at 10 p.m. Friday at Strokers, 11236 W Hillsborough Ave, Tampa. Click here to listen to their track Black Label Blues.
And after the jump, check out Julie Gariso's interview with the grow up wild boys, including tales of their roughest gig and the time a fan poured whisky down Sixxxgun's throat during a show ...
Hillbilly godfathers: Frankie Mob, lead vocal and guitar; Frankie Sixxxgun, lead vocal and guitar; Doc Forge, bass and vocals; and Thumper Orion, drums and vocals.
Formed: 2007, in Tampa.
Forthcoming CD: Dance of the Dead. No release date set.
Their sound: A Jack Daniels-doused concoction of southern rock, hard rock and classic metal. Cowboy Mafia lassos you back to the days of fun loud music (early Van Halen, Motorhead, AC/DC) before the Goths and grimacing frat boys shut down the party. “We’re playing rock ’n’ roll like you don’t hear it no more,” Mob proclaims.
Keeping it in the family: Mob, who’s played in rock bands in Tampa and his hometown of Newark, N.J., goes by the real-world name Frank Consoli. He’s the senior member of the band, teaming up with his son, Sixxxgun (a.k.a. Frank Consoli Jr.) and his stepson, Doc (a.k.a. Michael Fortuntato), but be careful about how you refer to both of his boys. “Doc is my son,” Mob says with a paternal glint and the protective toughness of a real-life mob boss.
Cowboys and Italians: Frankie Sr. and his boys express their Sicilian-Italian pride. Doc has a giant tattoo of young Frank Sinatra from The Capitol Years on his upper right arm. “We’re from up north but grew up with all the southern rock of Tampa,” Doc says. He adds that Sixxx is the most country-leaning of the band, though Doc has played upright bass in the past.
Rough gigs: Sixxxgun and Doc say they got booed off the stage once, when they played as the band Six Gun Saloon, for sounding too country-western. After that, dad joined the band and added muscular riffs and tri-state grit.
The German West Virginian: Drummer Thumper Orion Parthener — the name on his Florida driver’s license, a moniker he blames on his “hippie” parents — joined the Cowboy Mafia a year ago. He met the band at a Shipwreck gig, where he was going to talk to the band about an opening (they had gone through several drummers before). He says he couldn’t contain himself, he was twitching, and usurped the drum seat from a friend who was filling in and hasn’t left since. With his 12-peace set, long flowing blond locks and tight pants, Thumper looks like he traveled in a time machine from an ’80s hair metal band, keeping double time and ravaging skins like Animal from the Muppets. “He wouldn’t take no for an answer,” Mob says, “and we don’t take no for an answer.”
Day jobs: Mob is an electrician, Sixxxgun and Doc are computer engineers, and Thumper is a warehouse worker.
Tunes: Some of the songs, such as Crazy, were written by Mob before the band formed, but Sixxxgun has reworked the tunes and added some newer tracks, such as Black Label Blues and The Boys of B&H.
Rock show spectacle: Don’t expect a subdued set from this wily bunch. At a recent Market on 7th gig, Sixxxgun performed a knee slide into an audience member who poured whiskey down his throat.
Hear ’em: 10 p.m. Friday at Strokers, 11236 W Hillsborough Ave, Tampa. Free.
-- Julie Garisto, tbt*